A Nigerian pastor, Samuel Kayode, has been caught in what has been described as Britain’s ‘‘biggest ever educational fraud’. A court was told how he allegedly spent seven years siphoning funds from the accounts of the acclaimed Haberdashers’ Aske’s state schools, stealing more than £4million.
As at the time of his arrest, Kayode, who was on an annual salary of £57,000 as an accounts manager, had a new Mercedes, a new £40,000 Infiniti luxury car, an Audi TT sports car, at least four properties in Britain and more in Nigeria. He had also made plans to move permanently to Africa with his younger second wife.
According DailyMail UK quoting the prosecution, Kayode spent the money at a rate of up to £98,000 a month, some on private healthcare for his dying first wife Grace in England – while spiriting more away to a secret second wife in Nigeria, the prosecution claimed.
Reports said he made no comment to questions posed to him by the police.
He was charged at Woolwich Crown Court in South London accused of obtaining £150,000 by theft and £3.95million by fraud. The lay preacher and father of four however denies the charges.
The report read further:
Kayode, 60, would arrive late each day – wearing Gucci and Versace – for his £57,000-a-year accounts manager job. He was responsible for managing the funds for Haberdashers’ schools in South London including Hatcham College and Knights Academy, along with four primaries.
He would work late locked in his office, refusing to share details of the schools’ finances with his bosses, the jury was told.
According to the report, Kayode was caught when an anonymous whistleblower phoned a new chief financial officer at the schools in 2012.